Sunday, September 30, 2007

Cross Country - Meet #10


Yesterday we watched Parkside run through the cornfields of Delavan for the final regular meet of the season, Sectionals start next week followed by the State Meet the week after. Parkside did very well against the other 33 teams competing by placing first for the boys, and second for the girls. Alex set his own Personal Record (PR) with a time of 14:26, beating his prior PR of 15:22 by nearly a minute!

Congratulations Parkside, it's been a great season.

I've uploaded some great photos that can be viewed here. Enjoy!
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Friday, September 28, 2007

Return of the 33rd

The National Guard's 33rd MP Battalion returned from Iraq yesterday to a hero's welcome in Bloomington. All 70 of those deployed returned home safely after spending a year in Iraq. Alex and I were among the bystanders on Veteran's Parkway when I photographed their departure back in June of 2006. I don't know any of these soldiers, but I felt a warmth in my heart as I watched the smiles on their faces, and the faces of their loved ones. It was an event I'll never forget.

Welcome home.

I took a bunch of photos, the best of which can be viewed here. If anyone from the 33rd happens to stumble across this post and would like a digital copy of any one of my photos, email a note to and I'll gladly email it/them to you.
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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Cross Country - Meet #9


On September 24th there was a small inner city meet held at Parkside. Our team did very well and as usual, I was taking pictures, the best of which can be viewed here.

What made this event unique was the addition of a race by future Cross Country runners. The coaches at Parkside extended an invitation to Elementary school aged children to come out and run as an extension of their PE class. Nick and his buddy Brian both ran, and finished in the top half of a large group of kids. This accomplishment will get them a free pass from having to participate in the next "fitness day".

Distance 2.1 miles Alex's time 15:48
Distance 1.5 miles Nick's time 13:19
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Cross Country - Meet #8


September 21st found us just North of Peoria at the Dunlap Invitational. We again witnessed another dominating performance by the Parkside team with the boys taking first and the girls capturing second. I posted some great photos of the event here. Enjoy!

Distance 2.1 miles Alex's time 15:46
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Cross Country - Meet #7


September 15th found us up near Chicago at the Troy invitational. This was a huge meet, with over 50 teams competing. Parkside continued their season of domination by taking home the first place trophy, a first for Parkside.

I captured some terrific photos at this event which can be viewed here.

Distance 1 mile Alex's time 7:14
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Saturday, September 15, 2007

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Cross Country - Meet #6

Saturday, September 8th was the big Parkside Invitational, our biggest meet so far. With 44 schools represented, Parkside did very well, here is the blurb from the website:

" The boys team scored 17 points to win the meet. The girls team tied Chatham for 1st place, but lost on the 6th runner tie-breaker (39th to 40th place). Logan Abeling won the race in a time of 11:02. Carly Pederson from Chiddix set a new invitational record time of 11:33. Brooke Gordon finished 2nd in a personal record time of 12:09. The boys team placed all seven runners in the top 10 and under 11:31."

Some of the Pythons parade their mascot around the field.

Alex and some fellow athletes watch as the girls varsity prepare to race.

Leading the girl's varsity are Carly Pederson from Chiddix, and Brooke Gordon from Parkside. They held these positions throughout the race, all the way to the finish line.

Parkside volunteers assist one of the runners.

This girl collapsed right after crossing the finish line.
Michele takes a break and heads for the concession stand.
Alex and Nick take in the sights with some other athletes from Parkside.
The boys varsity at the starting line.
Leading the boys varsity was Logan Abeling and Logan DeGroot, seen here neck and neck. Logan Abeling edged out Logan DeGroot in the last 20 feet to finish first.
Dneesha Hamiel from A.M. Jackson Math Science Academy finishes first in the girl's open.
Taking second in the girl's open was Brittany Peterburs from Chatham Glenwood.
These next three shots show a girl perfectly content with walking, while her Mother tries desparately to get her to run.

Here is the official discharging his gun at the start of the boys open. This was the race that Alex was in, so I made sure to get a good spot at the finish line.
Here are the 3 leaders, all from Parkside.
Justin deDianous finished in the top ten.
I thought Justin was going to lose his position near the finish since this guy behind him looked awfully determined, but he held on.
Evan Goodyear finished strong, garnering his second invitational medal.
Reed Henry finishing strong.
J.T. Goodman has a strong performance.
This was my first view of Alex as he made his way down the home stretch.
Alex flies by in passing mode, making a strong finish.

This was a great event, the Cross Country Team did all of us parents proud.

Distance 2.02 miles, Alex's time 15:44
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Saturday, September 08, 2007

How Logical Are You?

You Are Incredibly Logical

Move over Spock - you're the new master of logic
You think rationally, clearly, and quickly.
A seasoned problem solver, your mind is like a computer!

Cross Country - Meet #5

There was a small inter-city meet on September 4th, with Parkside serving as host. Our runners again did very well, here's the summary from the Parkside website:

"GIRLS SCORE: PJHS 31, CJHS 33, KJHS 74 & BJHS 110; BOYS SCORE: PJHS 16, KJHS 69, CJHS 72 & BJHS 97,. Logan Degroot won the boys race and was followed by Eric Gordon, Logan Abeling, Caleb Wiebenga, Peyton Scheuermann, Taylor Hallatt and River Gordon. The girls race had the follwing girls run in the top seven: Brooke Gordon, Brie Hines, Bailey Kerschieter, Lexi Modglin, Hannah Magnuson, Michaella Fowler and Kelsey Kinley."

The girls were led by Chiddix's Carly Pederson.

Our own Brooke Gordon finished second.

Parkside parents, Paul, Michele and Susan chat between races.

The boys race kicks off with Alex near the middle.

Nick poses with his cousins, Anna and Jessica.

The 4 leaders, all from Parkside are: Logan Degroot, Eric Gordon, Logan Abeling and Caleb Wiebenga.

Evan Goodyear follows closely behind two competitors.

Reed Henry working his way through the pack.

Alex making his way towards the final stretch.

Distance 2.02 miles, Alex's time 16:20.

This race was a practice run for the big Parkside Invitational that took place this morning. There were 44 teams, so the competition was pretty fierce. I took alot of photos as usual, so, when I get some time, I'll post the best of them.

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Thursday, September 06, 2007

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


A game that is becoming popular with Alex and his friends is Airsoft. Last weekend he and a few members of the Cross Country Team got together to do battle. It was Alex's first time out, and he loved it.

He came home with both eyes, so I guess we're ok with him doing it again.
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Fox News

Monday, September 03, 2007

Cross Country - Meet #4


September 1st found us in East Peoria for the second Cross Country Invitational this season. As summarized on the Parkside website, Parkside continued its pattern of dominance:

"For the first time in program history the boy's team scored a perfect 15 points in an invitational. We also placed seven runners in the top eight of the race. Logan A., Logan D., Peyton, Caleb, Eric, Taylor and River had an impressive 22 second split for their pack. The girl's team finished in second place (two points out of 1st) and was led by 2nd place finisher Brooke who ran the all-time course record for a PJHS girl. Rounding out the top seven were Hannah, Bailey, Amy, Michaella, Lexi and Kelsey. Alex A. and Brie won the open races. Winning open medals were Baylor, Tyler, Blake, Brandon, Justin, Pete, Tyler, Mike, Mason, Evan, J.D., Megan, Bekka, Rachel, Emily and Tyraina. Running PR's were Reece, Steven, Reid, Jonathon, Riley, Mitch, J.T., Alex H., Kyle, Kelli, Heather, Demi, Shayna, Kayla, Taylor, Ellie, Emily and Allie."

Michele sets her watch as the runners line up.

Chiddix's Carly Pederson breaks the course record by 42 seconds with a time of 11:40 to place first in the girl's varsity race.

Here's another angle of Carly finishing, and if you look close off to the left, there's a funny looking guy taking pictures by the finish line. Hey wait a minute, that's me!

Parkside's Brooke places second in girl's varsity race.

Boys varsity off the start.

Logan Abeling takes first for Parkside.

Second went to Logan D.

Peyton, Caleb and Eric finish out the top five giving Parkside a perfect score of 15.

Michele looks on alongside John and Susan Goodman.

Brie Hines finishes strong in the open race.

A few more shots from the girls open, you can see the determination in many of these girls faces.







The boys open race starts with Alex near the middle.

Alex working around the outside of a large group.

Justin climbs the big hill.

Tyler and Evan as they reach the top of the big climb.

Reed approaches the top.

Alex right behind J.T.







Alex heading down the final stretch.

Alex beams right after sharing the news with me that he had beat his prior personal record by 1 full minute.

The award ceremony.

Parkside athletes cheer as they are announced the winners of the meet.

Distance 2.08 miles, Alex's time 15:22

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